Local news translated – April 22, 2021

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Click here for details on how the local coronavirus rules affect the USAG Stuttgart community.


Daily Host Nation Update, April 22, 2021


Tübingen model required to stop

The Tübingen Corona model project had to be stopped due to the “Federal Corona emergency brake”. Mayor Boris Palmer (Greens) wrote on Facebook on Wednesday evening: “The Bundestag has now decided that we have to follow the ordinances like all the municipalities around us. Therefore, as of Monday, everything, such as theaters, commerce, schools and daycare centers have to be closed in our city, as well.” The incidence in the district is just far too high with 180 infections per 100,000 people, he said. The increase in the district takes place outside the city of Tübingen, where the incidence is 91. “If we were a city district, like the much smaller Baden-Baden, our incidence would count below 100 and everything would remain open.”  In the model city of Tübingen, people can take free rapid-tests at several stations. If the result is negative, a day ticket was issued that could be used for shopping, going to the theater or to the hairdresser.  Lisa Federle, an emergency physician from Tübingen and co-founder of the Corona model trial, is frustrated. She has had enough of such decisions in which the basis was ignored, and was “simply closed without strategy.”  However, the “federal emergency brake” has not yet come into force. On Thursday, the Bundesrat will debate and vote on the planned measures.  (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, April 22)


More young Covid-19 patients in Hospital in the Southwest region 

Böblingen district. On Tuesday, all twelve intensive care beds in the Calw district were fully occupied. One day later, three additional beds were put into the intensive care units. In the Böblingen district, the situation is not quite as dramatic. 

The situation in the clinic network is not yet quite as dramatic as it was at the peak of the second wave around the turn of the year. At that time, up to 120 patients were treated at the same time in the six hospitals of the association because of Corona, currently there are 61. Nevertheless, the situation is critical, says Matheus. “Now about 30 percent of Covid-19 patients require ventilation, compared to only 15 to 20 percent a few weeks ago.”  

The ventilator-required patients need more intensive care than others, and thus more staff time. “This puts a strain on our staff after a year of constant stress due to Covid.”   At the Böblingen clinic, for example, the average age of corona patients fell from 66 as recently as February to 55 now.   In total, about 3,600 people have been treated for Covid-19 in the hospitals of the Hospital Association Southwest in the districts of Böblingen and Calw since the beginning of the pandemic a year ago, more than 1,000 of them in the Böblingen clinic alone. Currently, 24 of the 61 people infected with Corona are in intensive care units, 19 of them are being ventilated, and the other 37 are in normal wards. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, April 21) 


Intensive care units in Baden-Württemberg

The number of Covid-19 patients is rising. At the end of March, there were 360 in intensive care units in the state. Three and a half weeks later, the number has increased by almost 60 percent. More than 300 Corona patients have to be ventilated, and some have already been transferred. (Swr, April 22)


Astrazeneca’s Corona vaccine

This is reported by the Paul Ehrlich Institute (PEI) on its homepage. Those affected had been vaccinated between February 13 and March 31. Twelve people had died, six men and six women. Up to and including April 15, a total of more than 4.2 million first doses and 4,153 second doses of the vaccine were administered, according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). The symptoms began in 57 of the 59 cases within 29 days after vaccination, and in two cases the institute had no information. In 31 cases, so-called thrombocytopenia – a lack of blood platelets – was also reported. It occurred after 17 days at the latest. After examining similar side effects, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) on Tuesday cleared the recently approved Corona vaccine from U.S. manufacturer Johnson & Johnson. According to data from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the risk of such thromboses with this preparation is around one in a million. (Swr, April 21)


Germany to buy 30 million Sputnik shots

Germany plans to buy a total of 30 million doses of the Russian corona vaccine Sputnik V, according to Saxony’s Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer. “We want to buy ten million doses three times – in June, July and in August,” the CDU politician said during a visit to Moscow. “The prerequisite is approval at the European Medicines Agency,” added Kretschmer, who had earlier spoken with Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko. EMA approval, he said, provides the necessary basis for trust. It would be a great success if the approval were to take place in May. An EMA delegation is currently in Moscow. They want to work together to achieve this approval, the Russian health minister had assured. “The minister is in good spirits, and so are we.”(Ntv, April 22)


Double mutant causes concern 

Mutations of the coronavirus are causing incidence rates to skyrocket worldwide. At least in Germany, the increase in the number of new infections has been halted, says intensive care physician Uwe Janssens. At the same time, however, he warns against further utilization of intensive care beds. Many German hospitals are already at their limits. It is quite clear: “Down with the infection figures.” Without tough countermeasures, more dangerous mutations such as the Indian variant B.1.617 could also develop.(Ntv, April 22)


Holzgerlingen: Trial run for the Corona test station on wheels

Böblingen district: Pharmacist Dr. Björn Schittenhelm and entrepreneur Florian Schnurer have started pilot project with a converted bus

There are now 50 test centers in the Böblingen district, with at least one in each municipality, most of which are docked to the five rapid test centers. These are now receiving mobile support. In Holzgerlingen, a rapid test bus made its first stop on Wednesday.  In Holzgerlingen’s industrial park, a Hassler coach stops in the yard of the Otto Maurer company in the early hours of the morning, waiting not for passengers but for visitors. In the past few days, it has been converted into a quick test center on wheels. In the coming months, it will travel wherever people need a quick test and there is no stationary test station nearby. (BB.heute.de, April 21)


USA places Germany on highest travel warning level 

The U.S. is expanding its highest level travel warnings due to the current Corona infection outbreak. Germany is also among the 100 additional countries on the fourth, red “Do Not Travel” level. France, the United Kingdom, and neighboring Canada and Mexico now also fall under this category. (Ntv, April 22)


Non Corona News


Böblingen: Construction work for new Autobahn junction

Deep cuts, heavy equipment and a rapid pace: ahead of the widening of the A 81 between Sindelfingen and Böblingen, a new road network is being built alongside the Autobahn. Leibnizstrasse is being extended and the Böblingen-Ost junction will resemble a labyrinth in the future.  (BB.heute.de, April 20)